Web presence is an important way consumers find and engage with your brand online. Today, tablet technology offers local businesses an affordable way to connect their online presence with their offline presence. For example, many local businesses are using tablets like the iPad, Xoom, and Galaxy as a way for customers to connect with the brand online, helping establish the connection between physical location and digital web presence. Here are a few ways you can use an iPad to connect your online and offline presence:
Showcase Images & Videos – If you have invested time, energy, and money into creating beautiful product, location, or service images of your business, chances are you want to display them in your business as well. You can showcase a rotating gallery of images on an iPad displayed on your counter using a display stand. Likewise, product, service, how-to, and testimonial videos can be engaging and useful to display in your business lobby or waiting area. This can help connect the visual elements of your online brand with your offline presence, emphasizing your branding and offering engaging content to customers.
Facilitate Social Connections – One of the best ways to generate social fans and followers on sites like Facebook and Twitter is to ask your current customers to “like” your business online. If you have an internet-enabled iPad available in your store or to your service force, you can preload sites like Facebook or Twitter onto the browser. You can then allow customers to log in to their personal accounts to like your business online directly from your store. Just make sure to log out of your personal or business accounts first, and remind them to do the same once they are done!
Since social media isn’t just about helping new customers discover your business and search engines are looking more and more to social signals like Facebook likes for how your business ranks online, it’s important to do everything you can to make sure existing customers are following your business online.
Request Customer Reviews – The most effective way to generate positive customer reviews online is to ask happy customers to leave you a review. And what better time to ask them than when they are inside your business? As a courtesy, you can load your business’s Yelp, Google Places, or Cast Page Reviews page onto your iPad to make it easy for customers to navigate to your review sites.
Enable Email Collection – Collecting the email addresses of your customers is an important way to stay in touch online. Email is not only a great way to notify customers of specials, promotions, and events, but to remind them about your social sites as well through links and icons! If you have an existing digital form to collect email addresses on your website or another link, load this page onto your iPad browser so that customers can easily add their address to your list. If you don’t have a digital form to collect email addresses, you can create a form using Google Docs, which creates a published link you can share to collect information, just like a survey tool. Then, you’ll have a working spreadsheet of your email addresses on file that you can easily access.
There are countless ways to use an iPad or tablet in your local business. These are just a few ideas that can help you connect the offline with the online. Have you purchased a tablet for your local business? How have you used it? Let us know by leaving a comment!
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